July 26, 2008 - Germany
The band (not all members are present at all shows)
Vincent Nguini - Guitar
Fans who attended this show
Just a warning - this is going to be a mammoth review but we had such a wonderful day. Lorrach was my first PS concert and it was quite simply one of the most perfect days of my life. I should begin the review few days earlier for a bit of context. I arrived in France on 24/7/08 in prepartion for a 6 month uni exchange in Lyon. I´d originally booked later flights but after finding out about the tour i decided it was definitely worth the effort to change my plans so I could arrive in time to see Paul with the lovely members of the French forum. So the day after my arrival in Paris, I went to Strasbourg to meet Alain, his wife Anita, Lionel and his friend Tony. From there we departed early on Saturday for Lorrach. THe concert was going to start at 8pm and we arrived at 1pm. We had lunch and walked around for a bit. We were very surprised at the setting of hte stage - a relatively small one in the centre of a small plaza, surrounde don all sides by cafes, hotels etc. It seemed a bit of a strange place for a concert. There were technicians on stage doing sound checks but not Paul and his band. ANyway we wandered around a bit to check hte place out and felt a bit lost as to how ot apss the time. But by the time we got back to the stage, Tony Cedras and Mark Stewart were there doing sound checks too (Mark with the craziest tie dye shirt) and before we knew it Paul emerged on stage!! There were already about 20 or 30 ppl gathered around and of course we all cheered and clapped and he gave a shy little wave. What followed was an absolute treat - almost an hour of Paul and his band playing snippets of songs in rehersal, observing Paul´s perfectionist tendencies - all captured on video by Alain. For all of us it was like an intimate mini concert - and surprisingly the crowd didn´t get much bitter. It was ujst magical to finally see him up close, to watch him in his natural mode, out of a strictly concert setting. He seemed veyr relaxed and was really in a great mood, smiled and laughed a lot. He was wearing a red tshirt (like the Old Friends tour) and jeans - lol finally a change of uniform we thought! - and he put on his sunnies after a shile and for aquite a period of time he just sang diretly facing us. I don´t know ehre exactly he was looking but I stared straight at him for ages and I think he must have noticed the home / Internet made Paul Simon tshirt i was wearing (and coincidentally I was also wearing almost the same hat as him) and he pointed at me during the Cajan girls line of That was your mother. It was just wonderful watching it all fr the front row - albeit quite a distance still fr the stage due to the barriers (baout 10m?) Anyway they eventually wrappe dthings up but we (all of us fr Strasbourg and Anita from Belgium and some other fans) walked aournd the back to catch a glimpse of him, THe benfit of a small venue is that there´s only one exit - so we oculdn´t miss him. Lio and Anita foudn the right place first and we all followed and sure enough Tony Cedras soon emerged saying that Paul was coming but had security with him. By this time we all had cameras out and things for him to sing, though I didn´t expect much cos he´s usually quite private with things like that. But he seemed to be in a really great mood and said ´I´ll sign for 5 min´ and started taking things from us (after security said no photos). Anyway, as I handed him my ROTS booklet Alain told Paiul ´She´s from Australia´ - et merci beaucoup pour ca Alain, c´est vraiment grace a toi que j´ai eu un de plus beaux souvienirs de ma vie. Well it was a little misleading cos I was mainly in Europe for exchange, but anyway, Paul seemed very surprised and he recognised me from a few moments ago, so he said ´You came from Australia?´ and it was one of those completely unexpeceted but wonderful moments where you´re so overwhelmed you just say the first thing that comes into your head and I said something like ´Yes, you´ve got to do a tour there, I´ve been waiting forever!´ and he replied ´Yeah we´re thinking of doing a tour in Australia, maybe in March´ - so there you go, first hand info from the most reliable source of all! And then as he started to sign he asked ´What´s your name?´ and when I told him he wrote ´For Nikki, Paul Simon´. I don´t think I can truly describe how much that means to me. It was my third day in Europe and after a dose of jetlag and homesickness I had really lowered my expectations and excitement about everything - including my first PS concert. And then suddenly to have him ask for my name and sign me a personalised autograph - it´s just so unexpected and so very touching that he took the time to do that, it wasn´t necessary at all, I would have been more than grateful just to have seen him up close, and yet he made the effor tot make it special and that´s a memory I´ll always treasure.
After the concert in Eisenstadt was cancelled I was quite depressed. The nearest possible concert was LÃ¶rrach in Germany so we decided that we will try our luck there. And what a great choice it was!